Thursday, April 10, 2014

Civil Engineer, me? probably not.

Something I should have mentioned in the last entry. While still pastoring New Hope, in 1965 We were at Lennie’s house, Sherry’s sister. Susie (Sherry’s mom) had walked out from her house, she had planned to go to church at New Hope with us that night.  There in Lennie’s house, we were all having some good family time, and Susie fell back onto a bed holding her chest. I checked and she was not breathing, I could not get a pulse. After checking her mouth and wind passages, I started CPR, continuing until help got there. BUT Sherry’s mama passed away in my arms, she was 61, one of the best women I had ever known.
My dad officiated at Susie’s funeral. the one statement we all remember is, “I know you are missing Sister Harris, but if you could just see her now, you could not  get her attention, she is seeing what she has dreamed of all of her adult life.”
scanoldpic7 065 - CopyScanoldpic9 046
Susie Geneva Hawes Harris 1904-1965
True, the oft quoted phrase, ‘Life goes on.’  Breakfast in the mornings, a kiss and off to work or school.  The change this time was not as hard as it seemed.  Of course It was much more involved than one can put in 200-500 words of course.  (There are times that a trip to Wal-Mart would take that many words.) Nothing in your life is as simple as it looks to another person. A lot of soul searching, a lot of thinking how this will effect church, friends, family and parents.  But as Shakespeare wrote, “To thine own self be true.”
The life of an atheist is simple. Live morally good, live and die, that is it.  No concern of the hereafter, no worries of where you or anyone else will spend eternity. Of course I continued to attend church with my wife and family.  I understood Sherry and other Christian’s feelings, I had been there. I never tried to explain or push my new found ‘enlightenment’ on anyone.  I was happy to live and let live.
We had the same friends. Life back at the New Hope Church went on under a new minister. Thinking back, and along those lines, I am smiling. When the vote was taken at the New Hope Church for a new pastor, I came out on top as a write-in. There was only one vote cast for someone else.
When my friend Grady Allen was telling me this, I said, “Now you have me wondering, what traitor did not vote for me?”  I asked laughing.
“It was me Jack, you said you weren’t coming back!” He explained, we were both laughing.  We were close friends until he died. My boys loved Grady.  The remaining family members are still  dear friends.
It was many years before I returned to New Hope. I was invited back many times to speak at home comings, but I never accepted.
The little frame house we bought was in what we called ‘Happy Valley’. There were 4 or 5 houses there, Sherry’s dad, her sister and an aunt and Uncle lived there.  My girl can always make a place ‘home’, for her brood. Shucks she can make a tent look good.
We were happy, Sherry working and I attending college on the GI bill, studying Civil Engineering.  Although I did not use the training I received immediately, many years down the road, in construction, it all came back and was very useful.
My favorite subjects were Trig and mechanical drawing.  But the whole time, I was trying to decide what I really wanted to do with the rest of my life, I was getting older, I was 27 years old, and would soon be in a nursing home.Surprised smile
I believe I made it two whole semesters as a student! (I know, that surprises you!)
Nite Shipslog
I have always admired the boy or girl who knew at the age of 14-16yrs or younger, what they were going to be: Cab driver, doctor, lawyer, nurse, carpenter, plumber or scientist. 
Did you know what you were going to be?  How did it turn out? (I know Jean did not plan to be an Alabama farmer’s wife!Surprised smile)
Cars of 1967
My favorite the corvair and a Ford I never did see.
Then there was the Muscle car, the Ford Shelby


shirl72 said...

As we say life goes on...Sister
Harris was a sweet person and
lived a good life..We all miss
the ones that have gone on to a better life...You sound like me
trying different things trying to
decide what to be as we grow older. I still don't know what my career should have been ended up being a secretary.

Chatty Crone said...

How nice you were there to try to save her life - I know that sounds stupid - but not everyone would stick their neck out.

Still searching at 27? I am still searching too!

Jean said...

Jack I had to work too hard on the farm growing up, and I wanted to do something else (not much better)ha. Grover's dad was a farmer and he wanted to be one , but tell you the truth we might have starved since we can't even grow a decent garden. Sherry's mom was a beautiful lady so sad she passed away at such a young age. I'm sure she knew you was trying to save her. Take care, Jean.

betty said...

Although it was sad and although she was so young, the way Sherry's mom died was a "good one" if that makes sense. At home with family there; not in a hospital or not incapacitated for years, but I know there was sadness and grief.

I knew in high school I wanted to be a secretary and took lots of business classes there. I knew I didn't want to go to college. After a 3 month course on medical receptionist, I floated into the medical field where I have stayed for all my working life, either as a secretary and since 1998 as a transcriptionist. I absolutely loved the job and the field, but it has changed so much over the past 5 years, not being the same as when I entered it so many years ago. I used to say I would be able to make an okay decent living if I was widowed, but now that's not the case with pay cuts the industry has done over the years. So its been an interesting ride, but at my age I'm not sure where to go other than hold on tight and see where it takes me.


Paula said...

I can always tell you loved your mother-in-law. I bet you never told one of those bad mother-in-law jokes either. I never wanted to go to college, I hated school. I think back then and in our circle I assumed I would be a wife and mother. I enjoyed doing that too.


She must have been comforted to die in your arms. I have always been a writer, at heart.

Louis la Vache said...

Paula wrote what «Louis» was thinking about Sherry's mother - and he won't bet against Paula's statement that you never told mother-in-law jokes...

Re the cars of '67 - that AMC Marlin was a bad bet my AMC management - and poor Richard Teague (chief stylist) had the unenviable task of try to turn that pig's ear into a silk purse, though the one you show is a 2nd generation Marlin and is a marked improvement over the first one.

I'm mostly known as 'MA' said...

The death of Sherry's mom like that had to have rocked your world a bit. It's hard for me to believe that you called yourself an atheist at one time. As you mentioned you were only a student for two semesters, it makes me wonder what is coming next.